The Tragedy of the Sunset Photo
Why they’re all over your Instagram feed—and why they’re so hard to get right.
When I signed up for an Instagram account last week, my colleagues told me what to expect. “Your feed will be 50 percent pictures of food, 25 percent selfies, and 25 percent sunsets,” they said. (There were variations: “Twenty-five percent pictures of food, 25 percent urban flotsam, 25 percent people hanging out, and 25 percent sunsets,” predicted one editor. Or “20 percent selfies, 60 percent dogs, and 20 percent sunsets.”) Amid the shifting ratios of glamour shots to guacamole to Great Danes, sunsets were a constant.